Video is a powerful medium for communication and storytelling regardless of audience, message, purpose, or platform. These guidelines can help you optimize your video communications while harnessing the recognition and affinity of the Iowa brand.

Define your goal

Before starting a video project, use the creative brief to define your objective, identify your audience, and build a solid foundation to keep your project strategically focused. 

Be concise

Unless your content is a lecture or performance, shorter videos will have a better chance of being viewed all the way through. Tell your story with precision to keep your audience watching and interested in what you have to say. Use footage to say what you can’t say in words; use text to communicate what your footage can’t show. You rarely have to do both at once. 

Leverage our brand assets 

Demonstrate our brand attributes and reinforce our key messages through careful use of imagery. Use our graphic elements to add energy and strengthen brand recognition throughout.

Quality is clarity

Making sure your video is easy to see and hear will ensure a more successful and effective piece. If you have access to equipment like a tripod, external microphone, and lighting kit, that will certainly help, but even if you are shooting your video on a smartphone, seek out simple techniques to optimize your work.

Captioning for accessibility

All campus groups producing public-facing video media must ensure that the video is accessible to the deaf or hard of hearing, as is required by law (within the American with Disabilities Act) and according to university policy.

Video Captioning Guide

Video showcase

The samples below tell the university’s story and highlight some of our key messages. In addition, the University of Iowa’s official YouTube channel features a broad variety of video content from across the university.

Explore the Youtube Channel

Video templates and resources

Gold block IOWA on black background

Video intro/outro

Horizontal, square, and vertical formats

Start and end your video with the block IOWA logo in accordance with brand guidelines.      

Sample text shown over photo

Motion graphic templates

Packaged motion graphic files

Graphic templates demonstrate how to use brand fonts and graphic elements for subject identification, titles, urls, and social media. 

Preview of text with gold highlight over a black background

Lower thirds and major title templates

Adobe Premiere .mogrt guides

Layered Adobe Premiere files for creating lower thirds and major titles in your video productions.

Sample YouTube thumbnail showing placeholder image, title text, and IOWA logo

YouTube thumbnail templates

Motion graphic files and Adobe Premiere .mogrt guide

Motion graphic templates and a layered Adobe Premiere file for creating YouTube thumbnails.

Aerial view of the Pentacrest at night


Campus video footage

Approved on-campus users can access the university’s library of on-campus stock video footage for marketing and communications purposes.